Monday, May 12, 2008

Mini-Reviews!

Uh-oh. Time for another Garth Ennis themed Mini-Reviews! There is just something about this writer that has me all jazzed. With each title I've read by the man, I'm stunned by the level of complexity in his work, the characters that seem so real, the humour that makes me laugh out loud. I love it. So let's begin.

True Faith


His second published work,
True Faith is drawn by Warren Pleece, and is a more personal work, according to Ennis' introduction than his first work. It's about men, religion, free will and machine guns. Nigel is a bored teen with nothing to do. Terry is a recent widow who begged God to let his wife live. Together, they enter a crazy quest to kill God as revenge. The nature of faith and free will becomes a matter of life and death for both characters as their lives spin out of control. There's definitely some heavy stuff going on here, the mark of a young writer trying to do the biggest thing possible on his second day out, with none of the marked confidence of the careful plotter that he became. I was entertained by this, and really enjoyed the religious/faith aspects of the story. Enthralled may have been a better word.

Bloody Mary


The Helix imprint from DC was supposed to highlight science fiction stuff that wouldn't normally fit into the regular continuity of the universe. It was swiftly canceled and the only survivor was Warren Ellis and Darick Robertson's
Transmetropolitan. But before the line was killed, Ennis and collaborator Carlos Ezquerra created Bloody Mary, a dystopian war story about a killing machine in a nun's outfit. This is the pulp Garth Ennis rather than the heavy themes Ennis as aforementioned. Using the stock war archetypes but putting sci-fi elements in their hands, the story is simplistic yet entertaining. The trade paperback collects both mini-series, and they're both pretty good. Not great, but good. I've been reading a lot of Ennis, so I can say with confidence, this ain't his best work, but it's not terrible. It's fun.

Fury: Peacemaker


I reviewed the first Fury mini-series a while ago, and found it pretty entertaining. This one is an origin tale, still drawn by Darick Robertson, set during the second World War. Fury (with both eyes) and a bunch of SAS are ordered to sneak into Germany and kill a high-ranking Field-Marshall of the SS, with much explosions and blood. So with this one... I don't know. I'm on the fence. The war stories Ennis isn't my favourite, so I'm a little biased against it. It felt a lot like The Punisher: Born, but not quite as polished. It's kind of hard to follow 'cause everybody looks the exact same and Nick Fury is written pretty much as Frank Castle. Thank god there was some Nazi-killing, and some nice foreshadowing to Fury's future. It was okay.

Also, I just wanted to say that I would absolutely pay a lot of money for the original art for that Steve Dillon cover. I bought the trade, but that one cover for issue 5 is stunning. The amount of emotion that Dillon conveys through the facial expression is astonishing. He looks so tired, weary, but unwilling to give it up. I love that cover.

And another Garth Ennis Mini-Reviews! comes to an end. Hope you enjoyed my unsolicited opinions.

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